Hi, my name is Dr. Mel Rosenberg. I’ve spent
much of the past twenty-five years trying to understand where bad breath comes from
and what to do about it. Now I’m going to talk to you a little bit about tongue cleaners.
The reason is that people have know for centuries that tongue cleaners are a good way to get
rid of bad breath. The reason for this is that over seventy percent of the odors in
the mouth come from bacteria on the tongue. The layer of bacteria on the tongue includes
mucus and food remnants and the bacteria are able to break these down and cause volatile
odors in the mouth. However, many people buy tongue cleaners and then don’t know how to
use them. First of all, I’d like to recommend plastic ones that are not brittle, that are
a bit flexible, and I don’t recommend metal ones because they can damage your tongue.
It’s very important, whatever you do, not to traumatize your tongue, not to injure it.
We’re talking about just removing the top mucus layer from the tongue. However, it’s
not enough just to clean the front of your tongue. This is not going to be very helpful,
whether you use a toothbrush or a tongue cleaner. What you have to is get back all the way towards
your throat and clean it in this manner to get at the bacteria and mucus that cause the
odor. Okay, it’s unpleasant. It does take some practice. You have to overcome the gagging
reflex. But this is one of the most efficient ways to get rid of bad breath. And you see
here, (the material that comes out) is a combination of mucus, postnasal drip and bacteria from
the very back of the tongue. It smells (take my word for it), and it’s the smell that most
people suffer from. So if you want to smell well, listen to Dr. Mel and clean the back
of your tongue gently, with a good plastic tongue cleaner.